Shop and take a scenic walk all in one location at Depot Square in the New Hampshire village of Peterborough.

Depot Square in downtown Peterborough, N.H.
Depot Square in downtown Peterborough, N.H.
Photo: Greater Peterborough Chamber of Commerce

One of the most photogenic towns in New Hampshire, Peterborough sits in the shadow of Monadnock, the gently sloped mountain that gives this picture-postcard corner of New Hampshire its name.

Downtown Peterborough is the walkable shopping mecca of Grover’s Corner, which encompasses Depot Square and its bounty of retail gems: Toadstool Bookshop, New England Art Exchange, Sarah’s Hat Boxes, Paper & Roses, Bowerbird & Friends and Peterborough Art Academy.

“It’s a very compact, walkable area, maybe two New York blocks,” said Sean Ryan, executive director of the Greater Peterborough Chamber of Commerce, “But it’s filled with all these great little places.”

One of these places is Ava Marie Handmade Chocolates, which boasts a variety of 30 or so made-fresh-daily, come-hither chocolates in its candy cases at any given time. Visitors won’t want to miss house favorites like mint Oreo explosion and peanut butter meltaways.

Last year, the chocolatier was voted No. 1 by Bravo TV for most outrageous ice cream sundae.

“It’s called the Mount Monadnock, and it has 35 scoops of ice cream, with candies at the base, and chocolate and caramel poured over it,” Ryan said.

The sundae is topped with whipped cream and the shop’s signature chocolate mousse. The cost? $38.50.

Don’t miss Joseph’s Coat, a fair-trade shop with “local” handcrafted items. Items vary from whimsical to practical and are made by craftspeople around the world.

Steele’s Stationers is a typical old cigar store right down to its creaky floors. The Sharon Arts Center galleries are devoted to regional and national artists, and are stocked with fine crafts from New England artisans.

Memorable dining venues include the Twelve Pine Restaurant and Gourmet Marketplace, an old train station transformed into a grocery/delicatessen with farm-to-table ingredients, and the Peterborough Diner, tucked inside a historic, neat-as-a-pin 1950s Worcester Lunch Car Diner.

Motorcoach parking is available.

To contact Greater Peterborough Chamber of Commerce, call 603-924-7234 or visit

The website for Depot Square is

Article by Kathy Witt